Breaking In New Zealand: World Not Ending
By Dave Their - Forbes.com
December 21, 2012 is upon us. Some of us, at least. While we in America may have to wait another day to see if the world ends in fiery cataclysm,New Zealand is already there. According to Twitter, the world is not ending. Here's a few tweets:
Jim Sinclair About The Gold & Silver Price:
A Move Of Desperation By The Fed
A thinly traded gold and silver market because of the start of the end of year holiday … an ideal setting apparently to make the precious metals price(s) agressively move. Yes indeed, Paulson could have triggered an initial sell off in the GLD yesterday, causing prices to decline. But today's price action seems too stretched. Logic or not, Jim Sinclair has opinion about it, and it is outspoken:
You cannot fix the problems of the Western Economic system by breaking the telltale thermometer, which is the price of gold.
There is not one professional who does not know sales in extreme volume at a time of low activity internationally have but one purpose, and that is to reduce the price of gold.
Is Now the Time to Invest in Gold?
By Tim Iacono - OilPrice.com
It's not been a good month for gold as the price has dipped from about $1,750 an ounce to under $1,670, two large sell-offs in recent weeks accounting for the bulk of that $80 decline and once again spurring talk of manipulation in the gold market.
Who is responsible for these market-moving sell orders and why they're doing it remains a mystery, however, since the long-term fundamentals for the yellow metal remain quite good – fading confidence in paper money, low real interest rates, and strong demand from emerging market central banks and global investors to name just a few – investors with little or no gold exposure might want to consider taking advantage of the lower prices now being offered for gold and silver.
Silver Vaults Stuffed Means
Price Rising 30% in '13: Commodities
By Chanyaporn Chanjaroen & Nicholas Larkin - Bloomberg.com
Silver Bullion Pte, one of Singapore's largest suppliers of coins and bars to retail investors, says sales tripled since October, part of a global surge in demand that drove holdings to a record.
"Our clients are worried that a major currency crisis or mass bankruptcies would occur," said Gregor Gregersen, the 36- year-old founder of Silver Bullion, whose sales now average about S$6 million ($4.9 million) a month. "It all has to do with falling confidence in the heavily indebted Western governments and financial institutions."
Putting It In Perspective:
In 2013 The Fed Will Conjure Enough Paper Money
To Buy 11% Of All Existing Gold
Submitted by Tyler Durden - ZeroHedge.com
When people throw around "trillions" (and in the case of local-denominated Japanese debt and/or total outstanding gross derivatives, quadrillions) with the facility that mere billions was being dispensed with as recently as 5 years ago, it is easy to lose sight of the big picture. So what is the big picture? Well, recall the following quote from Warren Buffet's letter to investors: "Today the world's gold stock is about 170,000 metric tons. If all of this gold were melded together, it would form a cube of about 68 feet per side. (Picture it fitting comfortably within a baseball infield.) At $1,750 per ounce – gold's price as I write this –its value would be $9.6 trillion....You can fondle the cube, but it will not respond."
What Can 1 Ounce Of Gold Buy?
Gold investing has become one of the most popular facets of the commodity world in the past few years. After watching the precious metal soar to its historic high in 2011, many have hopped on the gold train and added exposure to their portfolio. One of the biggest limiting factors in gold investment is the sheer price of the metal; at roughly $1,700/oz.
Brazil Doubles Gold Reserves In Last 3 Months
Submitted by Tyler Durden - ZeroHedge.com
With precious metal prices echoing 2011's year-end plunge, it is perhaps worthwhile considering the bigger picture. To wit, Central banks in emerging markets have increased their purchases of gold in recent years to bolster their rapidly growing currency reserves as the global financial crisis unfolds. Brazil, until recently, held only 0.5% of its foreign reserves in gold, but as Bloomberg reports, the nation's official holdings of gold now stand at 2.16 million troy ounces - double the 1.08 million ounces it held in August.
Top Ten Reasons Why Fiat Currency
Is Superior to Gold (or Silver) Money
BY JOHN BUTLER - FinancialSense.com
In the spirit of the holidays and hope for a more prosperous 2013, I thought my readers might appreciate a little humor to partially offset the relentless doom and gloom associated with the Amphora Report. So please, don't take this edition too seriously. But if you happen to stumble across a 'paperbug' or two over the holidays, perhaps you could share some of the points made here. Humor sometimes helps people realize just how hopelessly misguided they are. Cheers!
Number 10: There Is Not Enough Gold (or Silver) In the World to Serve as Money
Let's begin with the obvious. We know that central banks the world over have printed money at exponentially growing rates for years. There is now so much paper and electronic money floating around the world that gold (or silver) cannot possibly be expected to keep up. You can't print gold, after all, you need to find it, dig it out of the ground, refine it, etc., a hugely expensive and time-consuming process which practically ensures a stable rather than exponentially growing supply of the stuff.
Fallout out from fiscal cliff inaction
By Jeanne Sahadi - Money.CNN.com
NEW YORK (CNNMoney)
Congress and the White House created the fiscal cliff. And now they've waited too long to avert it, even if they do somehow eke out a deal by Dec. 31.
Dragging out the negotiations this far has created needless uncertainty and pushed some individuals and businesses to try to protect themselves against something the government may or may not do.
Fed chief has gone totally round the Ben(d)
By John Crudele - New York Post
The Federal Reserve has to be kidding.
Last week the Fed announced that monetary policy would be tied to the nation's unemployment rate. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, who has already done more than enough to destroy this country's currency, must need a change of prescription.
I could understand if Bernanke tied monetary policy to something tangible — like, say, making interest rates rise when an NFC team wins the Super Bowl and go down when the AFC is victorious.
2013 Will Be the Year of Total Fed Control
2013 Is Bernanke's Year:
Unlimited QE And Total Control Of The Fed
By Agustino Fontevecchia - Forbes.com
Barack Obama's decisive victory over Mitt Romney in the presidential elections has cemented the future path of monetary policy under Ben Bernanke. After unveiling a fourth round of long-term asset purchases, or quantitative easing, and a new threshold-based guidance, the Federal Reserve has put itself on a path of unlimited purchases of Treasuries and residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) until the unemployment rate falls. The FOMC's natural rotation will only strengthen the Chairman's control of the committee, while an Obama Presidency and a Democratic Senate guarantee a continuation of current policies, either under Bernanke or Vice Chair Janet Yellen.
Mainstream Media Finally Awakens to the Fact
that Big Banks Are Criminal Enterprises
By George Washington
"The Government Has Bought Into the Notion that Too Big to Fail Is Too Big to Jail"
Alternative media have noted for years that:
• Fraud caused the Great Depression and the current financial crisis, and the economy will neverrecover until fraud is prosecuted
• The main driver of economic growth is a strong rule of law
• Criminal fraud is the main business model adopted by the giant banks.
In 2008, Geithner was told about Libor manipulation
by Richard Field - TYIllc.com
In a must read Financial Times article, then NY Fed President, Timothy Geithner was told in May 2008 about the manipulation of Libor.
His failure to take action highlights one of the major lessons of the financial crisis. The lesson is the bank regulators' monopoly on all the useful, relevant information needed in an appropriate, timely manner to assess the risk of the banks must be ended as it creates instability in the financial system.
Fed's $4 Trillion Rescue Helps Hedge Fund as Savers Hurt
By Bob Ivry - Bloomberg.com
Deepak Narula's mortgage-bond fund is up 39 percent this year. George Sanchez's monthly annuity payout is down 41 percent.
The near-zero interest rate the Federal Reserve charges financial firms, as well as securities purchases that will balloon the central bank's balance sheet to almost $4 trillion next year, have made it easier for Narula's $1.6 billion fund to thrive and more difficult for Sanchez, a former college library director, to enjoy retirement.
200 Year Old NYSE to be Bought for $8.2 Billion
By James Burgess - OilPrice.com
The operator of the world famous New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), NYSE Euronext, has today agreed to be sold to IntercontinentalExchange (ICE) in an $8.2 billion deal.
ICE, which is only 12 years old but already runs several other international trading exchanges in the commodities and derivatives markets, will pay $33.12 a share for the NYSE operator, a premium of 38% above Wednesday's closing price.
U.S. Mint testing new metals to make coins cheaper
By Joann Loviglio, AP - WashingtonTimes.com
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — When it comes to making coins, the Mint isn't getting its two cents worth. In some cases, it doesn't even get half of that. A penny costs more than two cents and a nickel costs more than 11 cents to make and distribute. The quandary is how to make coins more cheaply without sparing our change's quality and durability, or altering its size and appearance.
A 400-page report presented last week to Congress outlines nearly two years of trials conducted at the Mint in Philadelphia, where a variety of metal recipes were put through their paces in the massive facility's high-speed coin-making machinery.
Why Reported Inflation Seems Different Than Reality
By Lance Roberts, StreetTalkLive - FinancialSense.com
The subject of inflation has remained an emotionally charged topic of debate over the last several years. As rising prices for individuals, and businesses, has negatively impacted their prosperity; reported inflation has remained at very low levels. With the Fed pumping trillions of dollars into financial system the fear of much higher inflation, as the dollar is debased, has caused gold prices to soar in recent years. As we will discuss momentarily, the issues surrounding government spending, and the massive deficit, has brought the topic of inflation to the forefront of the political debate.
Tokyo Plays Hardball, Weakens Yen, Lifts the Nikkei
BY GARY DORSCH - FinancialSense.com
"By a continuing process of inflation, governments can confiscate, secretly and unobserved, an important part of the wealth of their citizens. By this method they not only confiscate, but they confiscate arbitrarily; and while the process impoverishes many, it actually enriches some. And not one man in a million will detect the theft," John Maynard Keynes wrote in 1920.
On Dec 12th, a shadowy group of political lackeys, voted 11-1 to launch what's popularly dubbed as "Infinity QE-4," – the Federal Reserve's most radical scheme ever, that's designed to enable the US-government to continue borrowing as much as $1-trillion per year, for the next several years, if necessary, in order to finance the burgeoning US-welfare state. US-lawmakers are negotiating over the details of the so-called "fiscal cliff," but are simply nibbling at the edges of $1-trillion budget deficits. Yet US-politicians from both sides of the isle, believe they can stave off significant tax hikes and spending cuts, without having to pay a penalty of sharply higher interest rates, which normally follows such fiscal recklessness.
The Coming China Crisis: An Interview with Bert Dohmen
BY CLIF DROKE - FinancialSense.com
When Bert Dohmen talks, smart investors listen.
In 2007 when most investment analysts and economists were downplaying the developing credit market troubles, Bert warned investors that the probability was very high that the troubles would escalate into full-blown crisis and would produce a crash of historic proportions. He chronicled the developing credit crisis in the pages of his newsletter and also published a book in early 2012 entitled, The Coming China Crisis, which provided his insightful views on the emerging crisis in depth.
Economy shows some muscle, but outlook downbeat
By Lucia Mutikani
WASHINGTON | Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:05pm EST
(Reuters) - The U.S. economy grew faster than previously thought in the third quarter, helped by exports and government spending, but a sluggish global demand and belt-tightening by Washington looks set to put on the brakes again.
Other data on Thursday showed factory activity in the mid-Atlantic region picked up this month, while home resales in November were the best in three years, indicating the economy retained some vigor early in the fourth quarter.
What Does FedEx Tell Us about the Economy?
By Cullen Roche - PragCap.com
Everyone always thinks that Alcoa kicks off the earnings season, but I don't see it that way. The real earnings season kicks off with FedEx who usually reports well in advance of Alcoa and gives us a much more meaningful look into the state of the economy. So what's the global bellwether telling us? Here are some of the key highlights from their earnings report yesterday and the conference call:
• Guidance for the full-year was in-line with expectations after last quarter's big cut. That could mean things are a bit more stable. The outlook certainly isn't deteriorating much.
• Mike Glenn said they still see growth in the global economy:
Franchise businesses cite 'fiscal cliff' fears
By Tim Devaney, AP - WashingtonTimes.com
Add the nation's franchise operators to the list of those worried about what happens if the nation pitches over the federal budgetary "fiscal cliff."
Franchise businesses warned Thursday that growth could slow to a "screeching halt" in the coming year as they struggle with uncertainty related to the fiscal cliff, tax increases and new, more expensive health care rules.
Walmart's Widespread Bribery In Mexico
Wal-Mart seen facing sizable fines in U.S. bribery probe
By Aruna Viswanatha
WASHINGTON | Tue Dec 18, 2012 5:17pm EST
(Reuters) - Wal-Mart Stores (WMT.N) may be facing sizable fines related to allegations of widespread bribery at its Mexican affiliate, after a second report from the New York Times provided more details about the scope of the alleged misconduct.
Experts said the latest report, published online late on Monday, is significant because it appears to show that the alleged bribes were a substantial part of its business methods, and more than routine payments to speed up approvals, which are allowed under U.S. law.
Midwest Storm Cancels 1,000 U.S. Flights as Holiday Nears
By Brooke Sutherland & Mary Schlangenstein - Bloomberg.com
U.S. airlines have scuttled more than 1,000 flights as a winter storm pummels the U.S. Midwest, hobbling travel just as airports prepare for the peak of the pre-Christmas rush.
Chicago O'Hare International Airport, the nation's second- busiest for passenger traffic, led the cancellations with more than 470, industry data provider FlightAware said. The city's Midway International Airport scrubbed almost 150 flights, Houston-based FlightAware said.
Port strike looms as talks break down
By Chris Isidore - CNN.com
NEW YORK (CNNMoney)
A strike at container ports from Boston to Houston appears more likely after talks broke down Tuesday, leaving businesses worried about a crippling shutdown set to start in less than two weeks.
The strike involves 14,500 dock workers at all major ports along the East and Gulf Coasts and could cost the economy at least $1 billion a day, as it stops the flow of goods from clothing and toys to televisions and furniture. The ports also accept many materials crucial to keeping U.S. factories running, such as auto parts and heavy machinery.
To Cease Tax Avoidance, End Deductions & Cut Taxes
By Julian Morris, RealClearMarkets.com
George Osborne, Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer (think: Treasury Secretary with a posh accent and a permanent sneer), earlier this month announced his solution to the country's fiscal problems: clamp down on "tax avoidance." While tax avoidance is certainly not desirable, Osborne's solution for the most part would be counterproductive.
In particular, his proposal to adopt a General Anti-Abuse Rule (GAAR) and to work with the G8 to force companies to pay higher tax rates would make us all worse off: tax rates everywhere would rise, economic growth would fall, and we would end up even more in debt. A far better solution would be to remove the deductions and other loopholes that enable such avoidance - and lower tax rates.
Shiller: Housing Hasn't Necessarily Bottomed Yet
By Cullen Roche - PragCap.com
In an interview on CNBC earlier today Robert Shiller provided his outlook for housing. Shiller says house prices haven't necessarily bottomed yet.
"A lot of people seem to think that if the market turns around, that means more of the same, meaning another big boom."
"I don't think [a boom] is in the cards. We might see home prices go up a little bit, you know, a little bit above inflation, maybe. Not likely that we'll see a real boom."
FINANCIAL BURDEN OF INSURANCE EXCHANGES
by TONY LEE - Breitbat.com
The refusal by a majority of states to set up state-based exchanges could neuter some important aspects of Obamacare and make it more difficult for the federal government to actually implement the law.
On December 12th, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett, a Republican, announced his state would not participate in Obamacare's state-based health insurance exchange program, making Pennsylvania the 28th state to allow the federal government to operate its health insurance exchange.
Worries that Matt Damon's New Film
may Turn American's against Fracking
By Charles Kennedy - OilPrice.com
With his new film 'Promised Land', Matt Damon is enetering the fracking debate, and fracking companies are worried that his celebrity status could help to influence many people, turning them against fracking and causing great damage to the industry.
The film, co-written with John Krasinski, best known as Jim Halpert from the American version of the Office, explores the debate surrounding the controversial technology, with Damon playing Steve Butler, a gas industry representative looking to secure land leases in rural towns.
The Bakken Oil Boom: Moving "Back Home" to Montana?
By Keith Schaefer - OilPrice.com
Most people associate the huge Bakken oil field with North Dakota... but did you know the Bakken was actually discovered to the north in Montana?
Drilling equipment and crews are moving "back home" from North Dakota—where the Bakken Boom has been the Biggest. In fact Montana's rig count has grown to 22 from just eight at this time last year.
Montana's Department of Natural Resources and Conservation issued a record 356 oil drilling permits in the first ten months of the year, easily beating the previous record of 313 set in 2005.
Gun-Control Support Modest Even After School Shooting
By Frank Bass - Bloomberg.com
Support for gun control in the wake of last week's mass shooting at an elementary school inConnecticut remains far below the peak seen at the turn of the century, according to a surveyreleased today.
The poll by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, taken after the killing of 20 children and seven adults in Newtown, reflects only a modest change in attitudes, the Washington-based organization said. The survey found 49 percent of people believe it's more important to control gun ownership than to protect Americans' right to own guns, while 42 percent placed a higher priority on the right to possess firearms.
Pensions invested in firearms…
The money behind the Newtown massacre
One way to reduce mass shootings is for big institutions to stop funding the assault weapon manufacturers.
By Dan Primack - Fortune.com
FORTUNE -- Do you know who owns more than a 6% stake in the maker of .223 Bushmaster rifles, like the one used last Friday to murder 20 first graders and seven adults in Newtown, Connecticut? California public schoolteachers.
The company in question is Freedom Group, a privately-held firearms conglomerate formed by private equity and hedge fund group Cerberus Capital Management. Cerberus created the platform in April 2006 via the acquisition of Bushmaster, after which it added another 10 makers of firearms, ammunition and accessories (including Remington, Marlin Arms and Barnes Bullets).
Gun Grabbers Call For
Re-Education Programs In Public Schools
by Brandon Smith - ZeroHedge.com
Was the shooting of 20 students in Newtown, Connecticut the Neo-Liberal version of 9/11? The question merits considerable thought, but let me explain further what I mean. In the aftermath of the 9/11 World Trade Center attacks, a sense of shock and awe sunk into the minds of the American populace like nothing seen in decades. This overwhelming fear, this logic crippling terror, infected the public to more destructive ends than any deadly virus in existence. Conservatives were especially vulnerable to the infectious symptoms of the event, abandoning all reason and even their small government values to support the fascist inklings of the Bush Administration. More than a decade later, the Neo-Liberal (fake liberal) Obama Administration and its minions continue the Bush legacy by exploiting our latest tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary as a means to an end; a political opportunity to assert federal authority as more valuable than constitutional freedom. If you can't convince people through rational debate that your position is the correct one, and, if you have to threaten them, lie to them, or brainwash them before they will adopt your ideas, then there is something wrong with your ideas.
Communist Chinese Government
Calls For Americans to be Disarmed
China can keep its draconian police state,
Americans will keep their guns
By Paul Joseph Watson - Infowars.com
The Communist Chinese government, via its state-run media front Xinhua, has called for Americans to be disarmed, arguing that the Sandy Hook school massacre demands "no delay for U.S. gun control."
Xinhua is virtually the press agency for the Communist Chinese government. The organization, "is subordinate to the State Council and reports to the Communist Party of China's Propaganda and Public Information Departments."
NDAA Indefinite Detention Provision
Mysteriously Stripped From Bill
By Michael McAuliff - HuffingtonPost.com
WASHINGTON -- Congress stripped a provision Tuesday from a defense bill that aimed to shield Americans from the possibility of being imprisoned indefinitely without trial by the military. The provision was replaced with a passage that appears to give citizens little protection from indefinite detention.
The amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013 was added by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), but there was no similar language in the version of the bill that passed the House, and it was dumped from the final bill released Tuesday after a conference committee from both chambers worked out a unified measure.
GALLUP: AMERICANS WANT MENTAL HEALTH LAWS,
POLICE, NOT BANNING GUNS
by WILLIAM BIGELOW - Breitbart.com
Despite the attempts by the Left to use the massacre in Newtown, Connecticut to forward their anti-gun agenda, Americans feel that there are other avenues they would rather explore to protect to innocent children, according to a new Gallup Poll. In order of preference, the poll shows that 53% of Americans would favor an increased police presence at schools, 50% wanted to increase government spending on mental health screening and treatment, 47% thought that gun violence on TV, in movies and in video games should be decreased, and 42% thought the sale of assault and semi-automatic guns should be banned.
A REAL PUBLIC OPINION POLL:
8,000 PEOPLE A DAY JOIN NRA AFTER SANDY HOOK
by Awr Hawkins - Breitbart.com
While the media seizes on the tragedy in Connecticut to tell us that Americans have now largely turned a corner and thrown away their love for 2nd Amendment freedoms, reality tells us something completely different.
The reality is that "8,000 new members" have the joined the National Rifle Association (NRA) every day since the terrible crime at Sandy Hook Elementary School was committed.
OBAMA COMES AFTER THE GUNS
By Ben Shapiro - Breitbart.com
Today, President Obama took to the podium to declare his unsurprising support for new, poorly-calibrated gun laws. His logic was simple: a horrific massacre occurred in Newtown, Connecticut at Sandy Hook Elementary, and we must try something. Anything. Well, not anything -- the same tried-and-true liberal gun control measures that have failed time and again.
Obama said, "We may never know all the reasons why this tragedy happened. We do know that every day since, more Americans have died of gun violence. We know such violence has terrible consequences for our society. And if there is even one thing that we can do to prevent any of these events, we have a deep obligation, all of us, to try."
END OF WORLD RUMORS PROMPT MI
TO CLOSE OVER 30 SCHOOLS
More than 30 Michigan schools closed for the holidays two days early, in part because the Mayan calendar predicts the world will end on Friday, an official said.
Matt Wandrie, superintendent for Lapeer Community Schools, said doomsday "rumors" are running rampant in several districts, adding to fears raised by last week's school shooting in Newtown, Conn.
In Greek Migrant Camp, Refugees Find Tough Road to Europe
By Naomi Kresge - Bloomberg.com
It was 6:30 a.m. on a Saturday when Greek Coast Guard Ensign Chrisafis Theofilos's boat got a report of a migrant drowning off the coast of the island of Lesbos.
As dawn began to break, Theofilos sped south toward the man's coordinates. His scheduled departure had already been delayed five hours by a broken radar system that headquarters inAthens hadn't yet fixed. That made night patrols too dangerous. Before Theofilos got to the man, another Coast Guard boat had already picked him up and taken him to the hospital with hypothermia.
Mexico's ethnic Maya unmoved by 2012 'Armageddon' hysteria
By Alexandra Alper - Reuters.com
IZAMAL, Mexico, Dec 19 (Reuters) - Thousands of mystics, New Age dreamers and fans of pre-Hispanic culture have been drawn to Mexico in hopes of witnessing great things when the day in an old Maya calendar dubbed "the end of the world" dawns on Friday.
But many of today's ethnic Maya cannot understand the fuss. Mostly Christian, they have looked on in wonder at the influx of foreign tourists to ancient cities in southern Mexico and Central America whose heyday passed hundreds of years ago.
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